Everything is easier when you already know something about it – Yorkies included! By understanding your Yorkies’ personality and inborn traits, you can facilitate your Yorkie training efforts. This article will introduce some of the traits that are specific to Yorkies in general, and then suggest how you can work with those traits to train your dog faster (or at least, with less difficulty).
Yorkie Training and Intelligence
If one thing can be said about the Yorkie, it’s that it’s a smart dog. And compared to the Pekingese, the Yorkie is a genius. Other dogs, like the Pekingese, may learn a simple command after being taught 50 or more times. The Yorkie however, will “get it” after only 20 or 25 times. This little fact stresses the importance of persistence. Teaching a Yorkie to “sit” 20 times may seem intimidating, but if you were to teach slower-learning dog like a Shih Tzu to sit, 20 efforts don’t seem so bad. Shih Tzus after all, learn at the same pace of a Pekingese, which not only requires persistence, it requires the patience of a saint!
The Yorkie’s Innate Desire to Please
Although all dogs like to please their owners, Yorkies seem to take it to the max. This is what makes them excellent show dogs. It’s also what makes them easy to train. (Well, that and some yummy rewards.) As long as you reward proper behavior with a treat, Yorkies will obey your commands — but not just because they like the incentive. Yorkies figure that they’re doing **something** that pleases you, else they wouldn’t keep getting those delicious kibbles.
The Yorkie’s Tenacity
At times, Yorkies seemingly refuse to learn a trick or follow a command no matter what you do. They’re not necessarily being disagreeable just for the heck of it. They may actually have a good reason for not complying. Being humans — we’ll never know what that reason is but it doesn’t make sufficient grounds to give up. The most important reason that we train dogs in the first place is to keep them safe and out of danger. So if your Yorkie demonstrates a refusal to learn, persist.
The Yorkie’s Independence
In addition to tenacity, Yorkies will demonstrate a lot of independent behaviors that makes training a little difficult. As an owner, you have to teach your dog to curb these independent behaviors and act on your command. If you don’t, your Yorkie will run about as if he’s the king of the world. Yes, a royal behavior may be funny or cute inside the home, but it can be dangerous in front of other more dangerous animals or where there’s an incentive to chase after cars!
As long as you keep these traits in mind, you can tailor your efforts to accommodate your dog’s natural tendencies. And in a way, training a Yorkie is almost like teaching a toddler. If you know he’s a little grumpy before lunchtime, you can wait until after he has eaten (or even better — after he has napped) to endow him with your lessons.